Jessica Baggett, an author, writer and DJ has been in the media for a long time and she isn't stopping anytime soon!
"I actually started in music first, I was composing and writing songs," Baggett said. "That led to me writing plays which led to screenwriting and eventually started writing books."
And though she took part in the media arts program at New Jersey City University where she received a Bachelor's Degree in Media Arts, Baggett's journey initially began at Henry Snyder High School where she was involved in the media arts magnet program.
Inspiration arose from not only classrooms but her grandfather.
"When I was eight my grandfather whom I never met sent me a keyboard. When I finally met him, he started teaching me how to play it."
Once Baggett got into her own groove and sound, she eventually expanded her talents into more public spaces like churches.
"I started my own band called "Daylight" with my sister and cousins," Baggett said. "Then at the age of 12, I wrote and directed my first play which was performed at my church."
Eventually Jessica's writing became more in depth, the start of something new and exciting. All in the form of plays and screenplays-her most significant one being called "The Keys Of Life."
"I actually turned that into a book so I could reach a wider audience," Baggett explained. "I went on to filmmaking and doing talk shows as well."
Being an CEO and overall creator of your own content can have it's challenges but for Jessica, the reward is a fulfilled career that is worth every emotion-good and bad.
"I don't consider it to be difficult or stressful because being the CEO I am able to have the freedom to do things and not have to worry about waiting for people to do it for me. I learned how to do things on my own from writing, directing, producing and editing."
The start of a production company is not an easy feat. it takes dedication, hard work ethic and for Jessica, Pro'ta'jay Productions started under the strong influence of creativity.
"I started "Pro'ta'jay Productions" over ten years ago. First off, the name "Pro'ta'jay actually came from the word "Protegee' which means under the influence of an influence person,"
Inspiration is all around you and Baggett absorbs it as much as she can. Her own production company is a reflection of that.
"I consider myself under the influence of creativity so that is where the name "Pro'ta'jay came from."
Starting your own company means having one's own artistic direction, as the owner you have the freedom do what you want and take your vision for yourself to new heights.
"I started the company because I wanted the freedom to create and do things on my own" Baggett said. "I wanted to put out positive and good material for my audience."
The art of producing has been with Jessica since the tender age of 12. Her journey into production began with a message inspired by the lessons of Easter. She wanted kids who viewed her work, to truly connect with her beyond sacrificial items and goodies. Once she produced her first piece, many began to follow.
"The inspiration was that when Easter came around, some kids only cared about getting a new outfit and sneakers," Baggett said. "I wanted them to know that the true meaning of Easter which was the resurrection of Christ."
When asked what exactly was the first project under Pro'ta'jay Productions in terms of writing novels, Baggett began with a script that eventually evolved into her first book and many there after.
"My first book that I wrote was "The Keys Of Life" I actually wrote it as a script first then I turned it into a book. I was only 16 when I wrote this story. I used some of my experiences dealing with mental health issues and music. The main character Jasmine, was in foster care most of her life after her mother abandoned her. Jasmine had a mental illness and she couldn't read but she had a special gift in music. Anything she hears, she can play on the piano. One day a music teacher discovers her gift and wants to help her use her gift."
Jessica's talents don't just end with the production of plays, music, and other forms of creativity. Her novels in particular are an expansion of her life experiences. A reimagined story that she is excited to continue to share.
"I followed up with "The Keys 2 Life" which is the second part of Jasmine's story. This story also has a lot of twists and turns as Jasmine goes through possibly finding her father, being in love and trying to keep her sanity," Baggett said. "Now the third book, "Lessons Learned" is about how peer pressure can effect drugs, alcohol and sex."
"The Keys To Life" novels are triple the emotions, triple the pain, and triple the real life experiences that Baggett has faced.
"It is three stories in one dealing with the different types of peer pressure. I wrote this book because not only do teenagers get pressured but everyone does at some point," Baggett continued. "I wrote this book to appeal to both teens and adults."
Jessica has taken her writing journey to new heights. From playwrights, DJing, music, to best selling novels, Baggett is forever expanding in her artistic craft.
Her latest book "The Struggle Is Real" has just hit the debut literary stage and the story is ready to be told and fully embraced.
"I started writing this book believe it or not three years ago. I kept going back and changing certain things because I wanted it to be perfect.," Baggett said. "This book means the most to me because it is my story told through different characters and different situations being a teenager going through mental health issues."
The book is meant for readers to not only connect with Jessica on a personal level, but it's for readers to take a deeper look within themselves. To feel yourself go through mental health struggles that are hard to maintain, but it can be done with time. With time, you can win.
"I wrote the book in such detail that you feel like you are going through it as well. You can actually feel what it is like to have your mind turn against you. Not only that, it also gives you inspiration even if you don't have mental health issues, it shows that no matter what you go through, you can still win at the end."
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